Jim Coon / Mark Derricks Chat 1/16/02

Driftr - Ladies & Gentlemen, a warm Walleye Central welcome for Jim Coon/Mark Derricks !!!!!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - How warm is it? It's snowing here!

Driftr - Jim and Mark , how about starting us off with a little background of yourseves?

Dan(oh) - Do you have anything over by Ohio?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - No.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We did run the Masters Walleye Circuit at Geneva, OH last year.

Dan(oh) - What is Walleyes for Tomorrow?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Walleyes for Tomorrow is a fund raising organization that is 100% volunteer managed, and has a goal of improved Walleye production.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Just so everyone knows, TFM stands for Two

Fine Men! (HA HA - at least Mark says so).

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - It really means Tournament Fishing Management

Dan(oh) - Do you let out fingerlings, or improve water purity?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We have done some of both Dan.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We have improved over 1300 acres of marsh grass on the Wolf river system.

Driftr - How do you make these improvements?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - And, we currently have 8 Walleye Wagons that hatch fry each spring in areas selected by local DNR biologists.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We also make improvements by working to improve water flow through marshes. This is to get them back to where they were before man's intervention.

perchjerker - Ok, sounds very interesting, thanks!

Driftr -Tturning a swamp into a fishery?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Yes.

Dan(oh) - Jim and mark, do you get much support from local DNR offices?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - That's the most effective way of Walleye reproduction in the lake Winnebago system. (Maintaining flooded marsh Grass)

perchjerker -What ares of the country are you doing this in?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Yes, we work together with the DNR very closely.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We do this in the Midwest (mainly Wisconsin). We just added a chapter in Muskegon, Michigan in 2001.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - This is a grassroots organization, that was started because of the lack of Walleye reproduction in the Lake Winnebago system.

perchjerker - Muskegon is a really nice spot!

Dan(oh) - Are your tournaments mostly the Wisconsin area also?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Our local chapter's annual fund raiser is Feb. 20, at the Darboy Club, in Appleton, Wisconsin. We have had approx. 500 members attend, per year, for the last 8 years. We raise about $25,000 that night.

Driftr - Jim & Mark , where do you hail from?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - All of our tournaments, except for one in Escanaba, MI, are in Wisconsin.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We hail from Appleton, Wisconsin.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - This is our 8th year promoting Walleye tournaments in the State of Wisconsin.

Driftr - Are there plans of any expansion?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We would like to see the Midwest Walleye Series expand to local states in future years.

Driftr - Is that part of the Fleet Farm Tourney?

lTopol - Are the tourneys team only?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Yes- they are team only.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - M.W.S. will consist of 4 tournaments in the following waters: Lake Winnebago, Bay de Noc, the Bay of Green Bay, and the Petenwell Flowage.

lTopol - Are the tourneys 2,3,4,days long?

bob - No they are not part of Fleet Farm. Our Fleet Farm is a separate tournament and the Midwest Walleye Series is a new circuit of one day tournaments.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Fleet Farm Walleye open is run independently of the MWS.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - M.W.S. is 1 day long, Fleet and Petenwell are, each, two day tournaments.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Midwest Walleye Series is a great place for tournament anglers of all experience levels.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Entry fees are $195 per tournament or $760 for all 4 tournaments.

Dan(oh) - Is that entry per person or per boat?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Per boat .(per team)

lTopol - And how bout the payouts?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Payout numbers are based on 100 teams per tournament. 1st place is $6,000, 2nd place is $2,500, 3rd place is $800 and 4th place pays $500.

Dan(oh) - Where can someone find your tournament schedule?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - For more info, you can contact us for the full payout schedule and an entry form. Payout does go down to 18th place.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - For a total of $13,300!

Driftr - What are your tournament dates?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The tournament schedule is listed on Walleye Central, under tournaments and on http://www.fishtfm.com

Dan(oh) - Are the dates on this site?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Yes.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We would like to introduce our sponsors for the MWS (Midwest Walleye Series)...

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Ranger Boats

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Mercury

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Angler's Pride

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Y-Not Technologies

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - and Midwest Outdoors.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Midwest Outdoors magazine will be giving us a 1 page coverage to recognize the angler's achievements

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We are looking forward to bringing all these events to the local tournament anglers because of their diversity river systems on through the Great Lakes.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The complete tournament schedule can be found at http://www.fishtfm.com

Dan(oh) - Or on Walleye Central right?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - That is correct.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - If anyone wants to contact us, you can e-mail info@fishtfm.com

Dan(oh) - Does the State of Wisconsin put out fingerlings? Or just your group?

Driftr - Are there any organization fees to fish this circuit?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Yes - the state of Wisconsin does stock too.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Yes, our organization fee for the Midwest Walleye Series is $15. This will include a subscription to your choice of Midwest Outdoors or Fishing Facts magazine.

Stacker - Mark, how many teams will be allowed, per tournament?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - 200 teams will be allowed per tournament.

Stacker - Can you list the payout for first and the entry fees?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Entry fees are $195 per team, per tournament, or $760 for the full season (4 tournaments).

Driftr - Jim, is there a championship event?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The payout is based on 100 teams. For 1st place the wuinners get $6,000!

Stacker - Would that then be $12000.00 if there is 200 teams?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We will be recognizing 25% of the field at a banquet at the end of the season.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - That's correct Stacker. We will pay $12,000 for 1st place, with 200 teams!

Stacker - Thanks!

Stacker - There's no championship, correct Mark?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - That's correct Stacker.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We hope to have a championship next year, as sponsorship grows.

Stacker - How has the response been so far?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The response has been very positive. We just came back from the Walleye Expo in Milwaukee and talked to many excited people.

Bert - Are you coming to the Minnesota Metro area?

Stacker - Do you think timing could have been better with the USFA going under? Or were you going to start a circuit anyhow?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We won't be in the Minnesota Metro area. At least not this season.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We planned to start a circuit anyway Stacker.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Each one of the MWS tournaments are RCL qualifiers.

Stacker - Do you only qualify in first place or what?

Driftr - Jim/Mark, tell us about the Fleet Farm tournaments.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We have been fortunate to have Ranger boats as one of our major sponsors and allowing us to have 2 teams qualifying for the RCL Championship, per tournament!

Stacker -Thanks man!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Qualifying as a pro for the 2 top boat owners of a Lund, Ranger, or Crestliner, but they do not have to be in 1st place.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Fleet Farm and the Petenwell are also qualifiers for the RCL championship.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Fleet Farm, Ranger Open is a two day tournament held on Lake Winnebago out of Oshkosh, WI. It is a team format, fishing the entire Winnebago system.

Stacker - Mark, are you still working with the Fox Valley, Walleyes For Tomorrow?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We have averaged over 150 boats for the last 3 years in the Fleet tournament. We expect 200 teams this year.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Mark is still working with Fox Valley Walleyes for Tomorrow. (Jim too)

Bigfoot - When is the Fleet Farm tourney Jim?

Driftr - Is that only one tourney Jim?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Fleet Farm is August 3rd and 4th for 2002.

Bigfoot - Thank you.

Driftr - That is quite a turnout!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Fleet Farm Ranger Open is a stand alone tournament, a two day tournament.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - It's the 3rd largest Walleye tournament on Lake Winnebago and expected payout to be $12,000 to first place, in addition to a 9.9 Mercury outboard for a comeback award.

Driftr - How many places do you payout?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Petenwell Ranger Boats Spring Open will be held April 27th and 28th. It will also have a Merc 9.9 outboard as a comeback award for 2002

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - For a 200 boat tournament we pay down 25 places.

Driftr - Are there any other tournaments that you are involved in?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We are also involved in the Mercury National Walleye Open, and have run 6 previous Masters Walleye Circuit tournaments.

Driftr - Can you tell us a bit about that?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Merc. National is a 300 boat tournament (held out of Fond du Lac, WI) that fills the first day that applications are accepted! There is an alternate list of 75 boats (last year).

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Merc. National celebrated it's 25th anniversary in 2001!

Driftr - How long is this event?

Fish - How do you get involved with Walleyes For Tomorrow?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - It's one of the largest team tournaments in the USA, and has been won by a list of the Who's Who in the Walleye World!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - The Merc. National is a 2 day (Sat / Sun) event.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - E-mail Jim for info on how to get involved with Walleyes for Tomorrow (info@fishtfm.com)

Driftr - Are there any qualifications to enter?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - No qualifications to enter the Merc. National, other than having to have Mercury power on your boat.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Any questions that we missed?

Juls - did you get a lot of people sign up at the Walleye Expo Jim and Mark? I know it was slow but I thought I'd ask.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We had a lot of interest from excited anglers but Monday was the first day entries were accepted.

Juls - I see, it's good to hear that though! Best wishes this year!!!!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Thanks!

Driftr - Are there any other questions for our hosts tonight, now's the time to get them in!

Fish - Thanks for the info and good luck to you.!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Thanks Fish!

Driftr - Wow, you TFM people certainly have a lot of preparation & do a very good job at it too!!

Juls - For sure Driftr, they run exciting events that are well organized and lots of fun!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Thanks a lot! We try to make it fun for everybody. Details, details, details!!

Driftr - Juls, earlier they stated TFM meant 2 fine men!! J

walleyesareforme - Thats 3 fine men!!!

Juls - Hehehe well, that hits the nail right on the head! ;-)

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - No, really we do love what we do. That's why we continue to promote Walleye tournaments. We look forward to seeing you all again this year.

Driftr - Jim and Mark, do you have more land for recovery in the early stages?

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Thanks Juls and Drftr!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Driftr, are you talking about land for marsh restoration?

Driftr - Yes.

"Hooked On It" - Mark and Jim, with the USFA gone, is anything coming to Ohio? (Lake Erie)

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We're looking to work with more and more land owners along the Wolf river system each year Driftr.

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We currently have 2 projects to accomplish this for 2002.

Driftr - Hopefully you can come back next year with a good report on that!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - We'd love to!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - If anyone wants to e-mail me for information on either the tournament or Walleyes for Tomorrow, please e-mail me (Jim) at info@fishtfm.com

Driftr - Ladies & Gentlemen, please give a round of applause for tonight's hosts Jim Coom/ Mark Derricks !!!!!

Dan(oh) - Thanks guys!

bob oh - Thanks!

Driftr - Clap, clap, clap!

Juls - Clap, clap, clap, thanks Jim and Mark! Good luck this year! Thanks for coming tonight...;-)

"Hooked On It" - Thanks!

Jim Coon / Mark Derricks - Thanks for having us, we enjoyed it. Come fish TFM and join Walleyes for Tomorrow!!

Driftr - Thanks guys & good luck to you!

CHATMAN'S NOTE: Once again I'd like to thank Jim (Driftr) for filling in as I could not make this chat. Driftr, as my backup, will be filling in more often as need warrants. Thanks again Buddy! And to Mark and Jim, thanks guys I missed a good one….chatman